Renault aims to restart merger talks with Nissan and is exploring the acquisition of Fiat Chrysler, which would put the company on the same playing field with Toyota and Volkswagen.

Following the arrest in Tokyo of the former Renault CEO and chairman of Nissan, Carlos Ghosn, there was speculation that this reflected a degree of concern from the Japanese partner in the alliance. There is clearly a strong political dimension in the negotiations. Renault owns 43% of Nissan and the French state has a 15% stake in  the French car manufacturer as well as double the voting rights

The two companies have now created a so-called “alliance board,” chaired by Ghosn’s successor at Renault, Jean-Dominique Senard.

A third member in the alliance in Japan’s Mitsubishi. The three companies aim to sell 14 million vehicles and achieve a “savings” of €10 billion by 2022. While their integration proceeds, what is at stake is the company’s global positioning as well as the balance of power between France and Japan.